I logged into Everquest last night.
I was listening to SOE’s latest podcast (#144) about EQ’s 14th anniversary. They were talking about things most people did, like falling off Kelethin and running from Qeynos to Freeport for the first time, running through Kithicor at night, attacking the priest of Discord. My memories were only ever from the evil side of things, so I started remembering my first days in EQ, back in early 2001. I’d like to share that now. After that, I’ll get into what drew me back in.
My first adventure in the land of Norrath started in the city of Neriak, which is still one of my favorite cities. I ventured out into the dark foggy forest of Nektulos. It was scary. It was difficult to see much in front of you. My friend who helped me get started guided me to the ‘log’ camp, so I could get started on my killing. I started killing various snakes and spiders that wandered by that log.
I eventually decided to wander off on my own. With no map to guide me, I figured it was best to hug the wall leading south from the city. I came upon this green glowy pyramid with spires around it. Scattered around the pyramid were piles of bones. I thought, “oh, this is pretty cool.” I walked closer to the pyramid and one of the bone piles lept up at me. It scared the shit outta me and I started running for dear life. I thought I could possibly make it to the guards and they could save me, but as I ran, this skeleton edged closer and closer to me, until it struck me, stunning me and then laying me out. I was sad… and naked back in Neriak. My friend informed me that I had to go find my corpse. It was a good thing I took a simple route. That would be the first of many corpse runs I would make in the game and that wouldn’t be my last traumatic encounter with skeletons. I might write about that another time, along with some other memories.
So, when I last left EQ, I was determined to never come back. Of course, that was my goal like 16 other time I tried. Anyway, What got me was a new quest set that was mentioned on the podcast. For anyone who had completed the epic 1.0, 1.5 or 2.0, there would be a quest available for an ornamentation (appearance) item of their epic. They will revisit parts of their epic quest and do things like burn Freeport or have an encounter with Fansy the famous bard. In the case of my magician, it’s a visit back to South Karana to deal with another f’n pegasus, Squallmane. :p The idea of having an appearance version of the “Skittle staff” was very appealing as I had never really been able to wield it for very long. Its level was way below mine and the pet it summoned was only useful for so long.
I log in and I’m immediately greeted by two friends who have been playing forever (since beta, I believe). I felt like I was home again. I was also literally home again in Neriak. I started looking over my inventory and bank items and I had even more memories coming back. I could remember where I got most of my items and why I kept them around. I had a good laugh after that. See, I pride myself on my ability to avoid noob mistakes, but damnit, I tripped on the auto-attack button and gave myself a scare when I heard the combat music. Fortunately, I hadn’t targetted any NPC.
So, I’m back in the game. I don’t know for how long, but with free play in effect, it might actually be a while.